Greek National E-Prescribing System: Preliminary Results of a Tool for Rationalizing Pharmaceutical Use and Cost
- Nikolaos Polyzos
- Catherine Kastanioti
- Christos Zilidis
- George Mavridoglou
- Stefanos Karakolias
- Panagiota Litsa
- Valantis Menegakis
- Chara Kani
BACKGROUND: In Greece, due to the ongoing economic crisis a number of measures aiming at rationalising expenditure implemented. A new e-prescribing system, under a unified healthcare fund was the main pillar of these reforms focus on monitoring and auditing prescribing patterns.
OBJECTIVE: Main objective of this study was to document the Greek experience with the new national e-prescribing system.
METHODS: We analyse the dispensed prescriptions over the period 2013-2014, stratified into four levels: therapeutic subgroup, patent status, physician's specialty and geographical region.
RESULTS: Data analysis offered a comprehensive insight into pharmaceutical expenditure over the timeframe and revealed discrepancies regarding composition of spending, brand-generic substitution within certain therapeutic subgroups, physicians’ prescribing behaviour based on medical specialty, therapeutic subgroup as well as regional per capita measures.
CONCLUSIONS: E-prescribing system is a valuable tool providing sound information to health policymakers in order to monitor and rationalize pharmaceutical expenditure, in value and volume terms.
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